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The Shi'a of Lebanon
Clans, Parties and Clerics. Library of Modern Middle East Studies
The Shi'a of Lebanon have emerged in the last 30 years to become a major force in Lebanese politics, having previously long been a marginalised political community. Here, Rodger Shanahan examines the reasons behind this transformation from a largely rural population dominated by a handful of elite families, to an assertive sectarian force whose new-found power is exemplified by the emergence and influence of Shi'i political parties, most notably Hezbollah. In this unique and perceptive study, Shanahan explores the development of the Shi'i community from the imposition of French mandatory rule, through independence and the bloody civil war of the 1970s and 1980s to the withdrawal of Israeli forces from South Lebanon in 2000. Here, for the first time in paperback, Shanahan also examines the more recent controversies and crises of the 2006 War with Israel and the death of Ayatollah Muhammad Fadlallah.
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What Reviewers Are Saying
'Rodger Shanahan does an amazing job not only by narrating the history of the Shi'a of Lebanon, but also by providing a comprehensive context that makes this book one of the rare books on Lebanon's history.' - Hussein Abdul Hussein, Washington correspondent for the al-Rai newspaper; '...this study provides a framework for understanding all the major Shi'i political trends across the twentieth century.' - Max Weiss, Assistant Professor of History and Near Eastern Studies, Princeton University